Posted by Mike Frohwirth
After a meaningless loss in their final Spring Training game, the Phillies set their Opening Day roster. This biggest surprise may have occurred earlier in the day, when 2B Luis Castillo was released. Many, including this blogger, expected the veteran to not only make the team, but to be the club's starting second basemen. While Castillo's range in the field has been severely diminished, his defensive ability probably isn't exceeded considerably by nominal 2B starter Wilson Valdez. The strong-armed Valdez is far inferior to Castillo at the plate, particularly in the art of OBP, making this move a rather questionable one. It's possible that the Phillies know something about Castillo that is not currently apparent, such as an injury or personality concern. Otherwise, this decision is somewhat puzzling.
INF/OF Pete Orr makes the roster, as INF/OF Delwyn Young is sent to minor league camp.
Tuesday's removal of minor league 1B Matt Rizzotti from the 40-Man Roster created an opening on the 25-Man Active roster for Orr. While Young has a bit more power, Orr has greater speed and defensive versatility. With Rule 5 INF Michael Martinez as the only other infield reserve, the Phillies valued Orr's fielding ability highly. Manager Charlie Manuel also indicated that he had concerns about the health of starting 3B Placido Polanco, who has experienced some elbow discomfort. As a result, Orr could see time at 3B, both as a starter, and as a late-inning defensive replacement.
David Herndon and Antonio Bastardo were added to the MLB bullpen, with Mike Stutes returned to minor league camp.
No surprises here. Bastardo was needed as the second lefty, and Herndon is a bit more advanced than Stutes, at this point.
Brad Lidge, Chase Utley, Domonic Brown, Brian Bocock, and Brian Schlitter will begin the season on the DL.
No surprises here, either. No indications today as to whether any of the above will be placed on the 60-Day DL. (Though Amaro said earlier this week that he did not expect to place Lidge, Utley, or Brown on the 60-Day list.) With today's addition of Orr, the 40-Man Roster is now full, and the Active Roster is set (at least for the time being.)
The projected starting lineup:
C Brian Schneider
1B/OF Ross Gload
OF John Mayberry, Jr.
INF/CF Michael Martinez
INF/OF Pete Orr
The Pitching Staff: